Thursday, January 17, 2013

Holy Crêpe

Crêpes, French for pancakes, were originated in the northwest region of France. They are traditionally served on Candlemas, February 2nd, a holiday which celebrates an early episode in the life of Jesus when he was presented at a temple in Jerusalem. France had enough of this and said, "Let them eat crêpes," and turned it into a day worshiping a higher divine power which came to be known as, 'Le Jour des Crêpes' or 'The Day of the Crêpes.'

Candlemas is filled with tradition and superstitions. If you could catch a crêpe with a frying pan after tossing it in the air with your right hand, while holding a gold coin in your left, you were brought good fortune. Making crêpes on Candlemas is to celebrate renewal, family life and happiness. Because of the intended well-wishes of crêpe-making, in earlier French rural society, farmers offered crêpes to their landowners as a symbol of allegiance.  

Non-food related superstitions included Christmas decorations being removed from the home by Candlemas, as their presence would bring death among the congregation. Also, anyone who hears funeral bells tolling on Candlemas will soon hear of the death of a close friend or family member. Each toll of the bell stood for the number of days until said death.

February 2nd is alleged to be the date that bears or wolves become meteorologists and emerge from hibernation to inspect the weather. If they return to their lairs on this day it is believed that severe weather will continue for another few weeks. We lamely modified that tradition as our own using a groundhog who sees a shadow. Scotland has a bad-ass serpent that supposedly comes out of the ground on Candlemas and we have wizardly vermin that can predict the future.

It is not Feb. 2nd. But I want to make banana Nutella crêpes as I continue to incorporate Nutella into everything I consume/talk about (the real reason for this particular post emerges). I got the recipe here.  After researching types of crêpe folds, (the cigarette, envelope, baton, half moon, sandwich, stack, oh my god, when does it stop,  so many choices) I decided on the ole' burrito fold (the 'baton' fold). Super easy and tasty. I'd choose these over celebrating Jesus too. 

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